Transitional dressing has always been tough. And climate change has made it that much tougher. A few years ago a peacoat, thrown over a tee, was apt insulation. Try that on a morning commute today and you’re like a dog in a hot car. In a peacoat.
So imagine our joy at the birth of the ‘shacket’. Also known as an overshirt, this shirt with jacket DNA is more than just a portmanteau coined by opportunistic marketers. Fits have grown roomier to provide more room for layers, while the shirt itself often boasts a lining, or heavier fabric, for extra warmth. The shape itself owes a lot to the coach jacket, but often appears in softer, natural fabrics that let you layer a coat on top when winter bites.
Ways to wear depend upon the style of the shacket: a printed, checked or brightly coloured piece should become the statement, with other accompaniments taking a staple or neutral backstep; alternatively, your overshirt can be the blank canvas, with an under-layered tee or shirt to provide the punch. Whichever colourway you take, the piece is designed to be layered up or down as you (or the thermometer) see fit.
ASOS Shacket Military Shirt
The point of a shacket is versatility – the more you can mix it up, the more you reap on cost-per-wear. Which makes ASOS’ take a standout, since the lightweight design and neutral shade work with every other piece in your wardrobe. Just not all at once.
Available at ASOS, priced £30.
Lee Quilted Shirt Jacket
Quilted jackets aren’t always cumbersome. Case in point: this overshirt from Lee. There’s enough insulation to keep East 17 happy, but the fabric is lightweight enough to stop your silhouette bulging.
Available at ASOS, priced £110.
AllSaints Holden Shirt
A man can never have too many pockets. Or so says AllSaints. The neutral colourway sits well with dark jeans and white tees, while a military flex kills two trends: the utilitarian garms of Belstaff and the earth tones of Dunhill and JW Anderson.
Available at AllSaints, priced £148.
Shore Leave Blake Khaki Zip Overshirt
The military vibe isn’t just limited to desert warfare. Shore Leave hits the woods with a design that’s simple enough to complement existing staples, but still offers a point of difference in the chest pocket and zip fastening. With this in your arsenal, the battle is already won.
Available at Urban Outfitters, priced £55.
Whistles Suede Zip-up Pocket Overshirt
The shacket isn’t just about hard graft. There are plenty of more luxe iterations, like Whistles’ suede spin. Perfect if you need a final touch to the tricky smart-casual dress code.
Available at Whistles, priced £275.
Club Monaco Indigo-washed Cotton-chambray Overshirt
Club Monaco’s sharp and simple design sits just as easily with tailoring as it does your Stan Smiths. A shacket to separate the boys from the men.
Available at Mr Porter, priced £105.
G-Star Raw 3301 Padded Long Overshirt
Trust G-Star to bring flair to something utilitarian. Its 3301 overshirt includes an unusual (but easily wearable) print and the longline cut slots into any streetwear look.
Available at G-Star Raw, priced £135.
Percival Cream Twill Workshirt
With more influence taken from Denmark than Dalston, the Percival workshirt is indicative of the brand’s understated simplicity – ideal if you’re more au fait with members’ clubs than warehouse raves.
Available at Percival, priced £132.
Stone Island Garment Dyed Shirt Jacket
Trust the hooligan’s favourite to nail practical terracewear. Two chest pockets offer a utilitarian edge (spotting a theme, here) alongside the signature compass sleeve patch. You may never be man of the match, but at least you can dress like it.
Available at END Clothing, priced £215.
Topman Pink Zip Through Overshirt
Pink is no longer the stuff of hen party nightmares. As the Topman overshirt proves, a softer shade sits well with a tee and washed-out jeans. Dip your toe in the colour wheel without suffering New Rave flashbacks.
Available at Topman, priced £35.